Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Professional Development

I think every art instructor (at least: one I'd respect) should expand their own horizon - to learn a different way of looking at and making things.

Hence: a field trip to Portland for me and my family!

Ok first off:  there were donuts.  And lineups for the donuts.

Alberta Street was crazy fun for me...everywhere I looked, there was another whimsical scene!  (I'm really going to try to use the clothespin inspiration in some way this semester.)

Food is obviously a completely other scene in Portland (we hit the foodtrucks one much fun!).  This sandwich sculpture below by Jessie Weitzel was such a fantastic find.

(Check out my family as germs at the lovely Oregon Museum of Science and Industry!  We spent a wonderful day there too.)

...and more food sculptures, this time in textile form.  Oliver squealed when he saw this knitted roasted chicken at an art shop.

Another great surprise were all the street murals.  I took so many pictures, I can't possibly fit them all in here!

Anthropomorphism was the predominant genre in Portland this summer, visible in the street murals, galleries, coffee was everywhere!  I'm inspired by some of the greats (and Portland residents to-boot):  Ryan Berkeley, Stephanie Brachmann and Emily Martin to name a few!

Only a five hour drive down the I5 from Vancouver, BC, Portland was a wonderful family vacation.  The city of "beers, beards and bikes" did not disappoint!

Now I'm back and ready to get my art on with all my should all be ready for some Portland-inspired art happening this year!

Friday, September 11, 2015


The City gardeners have outdone themselves with this late-summer garden outside the Burnaby Art Gallery.

Charlotte calls this piece 'A Picky Eater's Delight'

Discovered this gorgeous mural whilst roaming in Port Coquitlam, BC recently.

Charlotte couldn't resist this brawny Captain.

A simple old-timey bakery at one of our favorite spots, the Burnaby Village Museum.

Mr. Hausfrau and I had a lovely day to ourselves a little while ago.   The riverside lunch was perfection!

Friday, August 28, 2015


I dug an old Girl Guide camp snack 'recipe' out of the vault this summer!  I remember stringing these up as a young Guide in the '80' kids had so much fun making (and eating) them!  We brought them along as a surprise for friends we met for picnics and as roadtrip treats too.

First:  Gather a few different string-able snacks.  I chose cereal, pretzels, and gummy lifesavers.

I helped the kids get started by tying one piece of cereal to the very end of the string and then creating a pointy tip on the other end by wrapping some tape as a "needle".

I didn't let them go crazy on the candy, of course (five per necklace only), and had them count out the grain snacks in fives, which turned out to be a handy math lesson for four-year-old Charlotte!

(Only after they were done did I realize that the snacklaces were counted and structured exactly like decades on a Rosary.  *Sigh*   Catholic habits...)

Sunday, August 9, 2015

Summer Summary

As every summer, I'm less in the studio, more living life with the littles who are home from school.

Galiano Island, BC - Summer 2015

Here's a sampling of my summer, so far:


 - Armistice

- Charlotte Cardin

- Egyptian


 - nectarine + tomato salad

 - grilled herby shrimp

 - the 'insanity' burger


 - The Wilder Life


 - Amy

 - The Paradise

 - The Killing


 - Galiano Island

 - The Fort Winery

 - lake canoeing

What's on your list?  What's appearing on/in your dinner table/ headphones/ nightstand this summer?

Friday, June 19, 2015

Art Lesson: Skateboarding Rabbits

I've long admired the art of UK native, Ashley Percival.  His whimsical illustrations are so cheerful!

I thought his would be the perfect style to use as inspiration for a new drawing lesson with the children in my art class last week.

We used this illustration as our prototype:

Artist: Ashley Percival

To get the children going, I created a template for the sweater.

(I find children under the age of 12 tend to draw to a very small scale.  Having the sweater at a set size forced them to stick to the larger scale!)

I had each child trace the template onto funky printed paper, cut out the sweaters and glue them into the middle of a piece of white cardstock.

From this point, they had to draw on:

- a head
- ears
- a jaunty cap
- eyes
- rosy cheeks
- nose/whiskers/mouth
- paws
- skinny jeans
- shoes
- skateboard

This was my example.

I had the kids create their own hand-printed background as well.
This one belongs to a 7.5 year old student.

Thank you for the inspiration, Ashley!

Sunday, June 14, 2015

Finds. Favorites. Flowering.

Some additions to the photo journal this week:

Our container garden is in full bloom

We painted the powder room the colour that had been keeping me
up with excitement...and of course finally hung the Grant Haffner
paintings I'd been obsessed with as of late

Big news in our world:  we are able to buy m√Ęche salad locally now.
Reminds me of summering in Switzerland...

One of Oliver's (aged 7.5) latest paintings.

I love a good crime drama in the summer months.  Been watching 'The Bridge', a Danish/Swedish venture.  Soooooo good!

Anyone have a good fictional crime author or tv series recommendation?  Ghost stories are up my alley too.  Please share in comments if you do!

Friday, May 29, 2015

The Woods in May

The forest we live next to is ever changing.

These are some recent images of the path along the woods:

The springtime scenery has inspired me.

This original abstract is my homage.

Waldrand - available here

Hope you are all able to enjoy a late-May walk out in nature too!
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